Government takes next steps to remove “derelict” Central Pier
The state government has announced that it will progress plans to demolish and revitalise Central Pier to “ensure its safety and reliability for years to come” – a move welcomed by Lord Mayor Sally Capp.
Central Pier was permanently closed by Development Victoria (DV) in early 2020 due to safety issues and has since been left to deteriorate, presenting what the state government described as an “ongoing safety risk”.
As reported in the August edition of Docklands News, the pier’s western tip has now been removed and the government has since announced that DV would lodge a heritage permit application to remove the remaining “unsafe pier structure”.
In acknowledging that removal of the pier was a key step in revitalising the waterfront along Harbour Esplanade, Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said the government would continue working closely with the community to ensure Central Pier’s future.
“Safety has always been our primary concern, which is why we are taking the next steps in delivering a safer and more accessible waterfront area for all to enjoy,” she said.
We’ll continue to work closely with the community to ensure Central Pier will meet the needs of locals and visitors for years to come, while acknowledging the history of the area.
DV’s group head, precincts Geoff Ward said specialist engineers continued to monitor the pier’s condition and had advised that the safest way to ensure a future for the pier was to remove it from the water.
“We look forward to working with the community on ways how we can revitalise the area to meet the needs of the locals and visitors for years to come,” Mr Ward said.
City of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the council was “thrilled” with the long-awaited announcement.
“We’re thrilled the state government is moving to revitalise Docklands by demolishing the derelict Central Pier,” Cr Capp said.
“The City of Melbourne will now support and lobby for its redevelopment, because we know Docklands has enormous potential to be a major point of activation within our city.”
The council’s recently released Municipal Planning Strategy for Docklands estimates that the area will draw 22,000 residents, 20 million annual visitor and a workplace for 50,000 people over the next 10 years.
The Lord Mayor said Central Pier would play a vital role as a “hub” within that vision.
“The redevelopment of Central Pier as a hub for hospitality, entertainment and retail has the potential to generate more than $770 million in economic benefits and create as many as 3800 jobs,” Cr Capp said.
“Docklands is a jewel in our city, a waterfront destination that can connect our thriving CBD to the harbour, incorporating Marvel Stadium and hopefully soon – a refurbished Central Pier.”
The state government said that the permit application for demolishing the pier would be considered under the requirements of the Heritage Act 2017 due to its registration as a place of historical significance to Docklands, and the City of Melbourne.
It said it would continue to work closely with Heritage Victoria, the City of Melbourne, the local community and other key stakeholders to identify opportunities for revitalising the pier and adjacent waterfront.
“This engagement will include a community consultation process in the coming months around the future redevelopment of Central Pier,” a statement from the government said.
“The government allocated $3 million to progress the redevelopment of Central Pier including the concept designs and associated business case.”